It's been a heck of a night and I'm a bit cranky after being at the condo annual meeting.
A couple of weeks ago the envelope arrives from the mangement company notifying me when the condo annual meeting will be. The notice was wrong - I wasn't sure if the Day of the week was correct or the Date was correct. So in another day or so, a second mailing was sent out correcting the last.
There were the minutes - be it me to remember what was said a year ago. Then there was a budget. Oh my goodness, could they make the numbers any smaller? They have a surplus of over $15K and they want to have over a 9% increase. Just watch me crank the numbers!
Going back a year ago at my first meeting, I spoke up right away. LOL like you'd think I'd just be a quiet bystander? I knew that this association was in trouble when I requested financial information and couldn't get it at the time of purchase. Lucky for me, I did get some information from my current neighbor. So at the meeting, I spoke, eloquently, about the need for a reserve study. After all my experience with my old condo and those condo associations that were my clients, I still am the go-to knowledge lady. If you are not aware of how the association works, simply put, the association collects money on a rateable basis from the members based on a budget. A portion is used for current expenses like electric, snow plowing, etc. - called the Operating Budget. The other portion is to be put aside for big repairs and replacements like roofs, pavement, siding, etc. - called the Fund for Major Repairs & Replacements(FMRR).
I spoke to our lack of and the immediate need to develop a FMRR plan. With my experience, I offered to prepare the plan for the board saving our neighbors thousands of dollars. Days go by, weeks go by, and some time in February I get some information that I promptly put together a sample chart to begin the discussion. So I send it back to the designated board member and days go by, weeks go by, months go by....... and here I am today ready to give them a public lashing in the most diplomatic way. :) :)
I reworked the 2010 numbers in a concise and tell all schedule. It shows 'us' in a much better light and then I had the 'balls' to hand it out at the meeting! There are five board members and this one board member, I'll call her Miss P. She is still cranky, defensive, makes tons of excuses, speaks in platitudes and generalizations that have nothing to do with our present situation. I dislike embarrassing an individual in public, but I could not get her to shut up. My other next door neighbor is on the board and she was funny giving me a wink and a shoulder shrug during Miss P's rant. She goes on and on about having no more time and won't do the FMRR or work on it for the association. I think she needs some seriously loving and a big glass of wine.
I finally get Miss P on point. Oh, Oh, we are going to set up a committee - I get to chair it (deja vue) - you -know-who isn't the happy camper. I gave a brief explanation to my gathered neighbors of what we (committee) needs to do for our community. Then low and behold five of my neighbors are willing to work with me on this project. There hasn't been five volunteers ever in this association at any one time! Even more funny - Miss P wants a report in the middle of March? She should ask for one about April 10th!
I was prepared for this meeting and sometimes I surprise me! A couple of folks had a quick chance to read the one pager I handed out and said they were impressed with the organization of the information. That's a sign of a good schedule! Yahoo!
Stay tuned, I'm sure there will be some more crankies to come my way. We will have an FMRR schedule and a plan to solidify the financial condition of our community.